Spillikins # 610. Free SIM cards, repeating an old story


  1. Free SIM-cards at Gorky Park – why and why they are distributed
  2. Faster, stronger, higher – about device performance in GB, GHz and other dimensions
  3. Smartphone Chipset Market Breakdown – Q2 2020
  4. “Poor” quality of a smartphone – why charging does not work and not only
  5. Letters from readers – how Yandex pleased its users
  6. Is a purchase at MTS with imposed accessories a familiar story?


People want to, no, even need to believe that big companies are inhabited by geniuses who know exactly what they are doing. When life proves otherwise, cognitive dissonance occurs. Probably, the presentation from Google is one of such events, which clearly proves: it is not so difficult to succeed in hardware, but Google does not succeed. An article was published about this, which I see no reason to retell, read it.

And we will begin our release with a story that happened on the streets of Moscow. Go!

Free SIM-cards at Gorky Park – why and why they are distributed

A common sight in big cities is the distribution of free SIM-cards near the metro, in crowded places. They give you a packet with a SIM-card of one or another operator, they don’t ask for any passport data. The card has a zero balance, you need to top up the card for 100-150 rubles, enter your data through the operator, and you can start using it. Previously, SIM cards were distributed much more often, today it happens less and less, but it still happens.

The first thought that comes to passers-by when they see such distribution of SIM-cards is always the same: such and such an operator went all out. The associative array is built instantly, whose logo is on the envelope with the SIM-card, that operator is recruiting subscribers. But for operators, the distribution of SIM-cards is in every sense a bad story, which leads to losses and problems in the perception of the image.

Was at the weekend at Gorky Park, hundreds of people go to the main entrance, the stream is so dense that this human river seems endless. There are two girls at the bench with a couple of cardboard boxes. They grab a bundle of packages with SIM cards from the box and dive into the thick of the passers-by: free SIM cards, take it, please. There is little agreement between the girls, one is trying to shove two bags at once, the second – only one. The first approaches the issue formally and tries to make sure that the second does not see the accelerated distribution of SIM-cards.

I stop because I am interested in what is happening. The second girl immediately flies up and offers to just pick a beautiful number: “After all, you will use a SIM-card.” Picks up some number that contains 999 at the very beginning, picks up the packet that I received while passing by. Before my eyes, in ten minutes, they distribute a whole cardboard box containing five hundred sets of SIM-cards. Open the second one and continue to hand out. There are boxes with SIM-cards in the car that is somewhere nearby, the distribution is arguing, since there are not so few people who want to take a walk in the park.

Spillikins # 610. Free SIM cards, repeating an old storySpillikins # 610. Free SIM cards, repeating an old storySpillikins # 610. Free SIM cards, repeating an old story

I hear a fragment of a phrase in the crowd: “They are distributing this rubbish, no one needs their services, so they are trying to impose even here.” An excellent illustration of why operators do not want any free distribution of SIM-cards, why they are against it and do their best to punish dealers for coming up with such ingenious moves. On the other hand, every month there are those who think they have come up with a great way to increase their “sales”.

Free SIM-cards that are distributed on behalf of the operator are not so free for the latter. A piece of plastic in an envelope costs about 50 rubles, taking into account all the costs per circle. For ten minutes of distribution, two lovely girls spent 25 thousand rubles, and the banquet was at the expense of the operator, since this is money thrown into the trash in the literal sense of the word.

Spillikins # 610. Free SIM cards, repeating an old storySpillikins # 610. Free SIM cards, repeating an old story

How good is it for the operator that their logo on the envelopes with SIM cards glows in the trash? Definitely bad. And no one in their right mind would strive to do something like that, however, the operator does not. The dealer’s initiative is due to the fact that there are neither skills nor opportunities to sell SIM-cards, but there is a desire to somehow raise these “sales”. Hence this massive distribution of SIM cards. What will happen next? Inside the operator, a violation of the contract by the dealer will be recorded, the contract will be closed, and fines will be imposed, for which they will most likely not receive any compensation. To prevent this from happening, you need to do just a little – sell SIM-cards for this or that money, and not give them for free. And in this case, mass distribution will become impossible. The very girls who briskly gave away the packages and did not count the lost money, since they are strangers, would behave completely differently. In one of the conversations, the previous general director of Beeline, Vasil Latsanich, lamented that such stories periodically arise for all operators and they need to be dealt with. As an example of the senselessness of the competition in the number of SIM-cards that are sold or, one way or another, enter the market, statistics were cited: about 10 pieces remain alive for 37 thousand cards. A minuscule, which is not even worth the plastic on which such circulations are printed. And the perception of this problem is the same for all operators, no one wants a free distribution of SIM-cards. They constantly talk about this, conduct trainings, but things are still there. Here another perennial problem comes to the fore, when everyone nods at their neighbor in the market. They say, we are ready to stop shipping SIM cards for free, but then our colleagues will get an advantage, they are not going to do the same. And this cannot be allowed in any way, because then they will get ahead!

The logic is roughly clear, but let them get ahead. We know that the distribution of SIM cards or even the sale does not lead to an increase in paying subscribers. This is a purely minus operation, costs that are not returned to the operator. So, maybe it’s worth stopping and changing the system so that the very possibility of giving SIM cards disappears from the market? This will be correct for all operators.

Over the past month, they wrote to me about the distribution of SIM-cards of MTS, MegaFon, Beeline in Moscow. I came across SIM-cards “Beeline”, but the problem is common for the entire market and all players. Although, of course, the dealer who gave the giveaway at the weekend near the largest park in the country may think of himself as something special. What the general public does not see is changes within the operators after each such story, there are always conclusions. But there is no common solution that would stop the partners from doing this. For any operator, this is an unfavorable story from all points of view.

Faster, stronger, higher – about device performance in GB, GHz and other dimensions

One of the most common comments that come across when discussing a particular model is how much it slows down in work. Reading the discussion of flagship devices, regardless of the manufacturer, you can find comments that they are slow, they do not work as fast as we would like. An attempt to find out what exactly is not pleasant in the speed of work, all the time stumbles upon the muffled irritation of the interlocutor. “I said it was slow, I can see it. And the fact that you do not want to admit the obvious facts, everything speaks about you and your position, ”- approximately this is the answer at a time when no objective arguments remain. It is clear that for many, the argument about mythical brakes is a way to prove that product A is much worse than product B. And there can be no real background here, this is just perception and nothing else, and not based on real experience of use.

I don’t like virtual parrots in synthetic tests as they create the wrong coordinate system for users. Many people like to run the same Antutu to prove to themselves that they have a fast device. And then the first problem of perception happens, the numbers are evaluated directly, for example, a device gaining 200 thousand points is compared with a device, which shows 500 thousand points.

It reminds me of a childish riddle about which is heavier – a kilogram of nails or a kilogram of goose down. The answer is obvious, but children are sometimes confused. With virtual points, the situation is about the same, they vary greatly, and common sense dictates that the device with more points will win. How much will it benefit?

And here we enter the territory where the ball is ruled by fiction, not reality. Most people convert virtual performance numbers into real device speeds, assuming that they are interconnected and one follows from the other. The connection is certainly there, but it is not as straightforward as many people think.

Let’s take the Galaxy S20 FE and the Galaxy A51 for example. Devices differ in cost twice with a tail. And in virtual parrots exactly the same picture, only here the difference is threefold.

Spillikins # 610. Free SIM cards, repeating an old storySpillikins # 610. Free SIM cards, repeating an old story

I arm myself with a stopwatch and watch how quickly standard applications start – contacts, Chrome, video player and others. How quickly you can move from one menu to another. The difference is in milliseconds, it is impossible to understand the difference in seconds. Yes, the Galaxy S20 FE is faster, and this is even noticeable at some points, but this difference is on the verge of perception. Also, to a large extent, “speed” is not related to the speed of rendering the interface, launching applications, but to the smoothness of the interface, which directly depends on the 120 Hz available for the display of the older model.

Manufacturers today are fighting not over the speed of the interface, but over the fact that it works quickly and beautifully. Animations, smooth transitions from one screen to another, visual effects to make the interface enjoyable. This is a huge world of “little things” that creates the perception of the product as a whole. And speed has not been a key indicator for a long time, since processors of an average and even more high level easily cope with any tasks of drawing an interface, its animation. There is no shortage of RAM, speed of devices.

Someone here may conclude that if the difference is insignificant, then all devices work equally fast or slow, as you look at. In fact, this is not so, the difference is still present, but we need to decide on what we call speed and how we look at it. For example, last week I wrote about the Oppo Reno 4 Lite, a mid-range model. Inside is 8 GB of RAM, MediaTek Helio P95 chipset. The cost of the model is 25 thousand rubles.

Spillikins # 610. Free SIM cards, repeating an old story

Is it fast or not? Quick. Moreover, if you arm yourself with a stopwatch, it turns out that it is faster than the same Galaxy S20 FE. But is this speed of opening windows perceived as necessary and pleasant? I’m afraid not. Animation on Samsung is much nicer, there is no instant display of windows, they smoothly pop up, there is movement, which is determined by the eye. Those interested can turn off the animation, and then Samsung will behave in exactly the same way, instantly slipping you pictures of menus and applications. And this is not very pleasant, there is no completeness that is present in the default settings.

Samsung, just like Apple and most other manufacturers, for example, Huawei, has a little secret – the interface output speed, its rendering has been limited for several years. High speed is unpleasant for the perception of the eye, we run into the physical limitations of a person. Therefore, manufacturers are experimenting with various visual effects, animation, which today is not only permissible due to the speed of processors, but has become a necessary part of the user experience.

I will express a seditious thought – the models of the middle segment and even more so the flagships do not have any flaws in the performance of the interface, and they cannot have them. The processor power is sufficient for all typical tasks. Moreover, the interface uses “cold” cores, that is, slow processors with low power consumption. Limiting processor performance tends to impact third-party applications rather than the interface and basic performance of the smartphone. It’s hard to believe, but this is the reality.

An increase in the processing power of processors is needed for third-party applications, and even then we are talking about a small number of programs that are able to squeeze the maximum possible out of the chipset. The de facto performance race has stopped, now is the time to optimize the set of features that we got. But in the area of ​​the interface, this race ended earlier, since there is simply nowhere to accelerate. It’s hard to believe, it’s almost impossible to accept. Especially for those who are used to praying for virtual parrots and claiming that device A is faster than B, since it shows so many points. The speed of operation of devices today stems not from virtual points, but from the setting of interfaces, the set of software that you use. And at the same time, there is simply no need to talk about brakes, this is a relic of the past, which is gradually disappearing on most models.

On the other hand, a person is big and can make any device slow down. To do this, you need not so many skills, it is enough to hammer the memory to the eyeballs, not leave the smartphone not a single chance. You can also install programs that change the system interface, and it is advisable to install more than one application, but several, so that they conflict with each other and probably slow down the system. There are many ways, and people constantly find them, but for some reason they believe that the manufacturer is to blame for not providing the system with sufficient performance.

My experience suggests that the performance of smartphones has become very comfortable, and already in the middle segment, starting from 20 thousand rubles and above. Of course, the more RAM, the better, you can keep more open applications in memory, and this also gives a better system experience, you switch between applications faster. But in general, the problem of brakes is very far-fetched, this is something from the past, when interfaces were too heavy for the computing power of portable devices. This is not the case today. And the same virtual test parrots are in many ways a relic of the past.

Smartphone Chipset Market Breakdown – Q2 2020

To some extent, an indirect illustration of the above can be the alignment of the processor manufacturers on the market. Let’s take a look at the data for the second quarter.

Spillikins # 610. Free SIM cards, repeating an old story

Please note that we are seeing growth in sales of MediaTek, the company is often criticized for anything, its processors are perceived as inferior in comparison with the same Qualcomm. In practice, everything is not so simple, the choice of MediaTek is due to the fact that these are the best processors in terms of price / quality ratio in the middle and budget segments. While Qualcomm benefits a lot from 5G devices, which is clearly seen in Samsung’s share, it declined due to the fact that the company increased purchases of Snapdragon, this is part of the deal to buy Qualcomm 5G modems (processors should actually be taken into , albeit in smaller quantities).

The future of HiSilicon remains vague, but it can be argued that the share will fall sharply, Huawei does not yet have its own production, and it is impossible to place orders anywhere else.

The battle for the processor market is unfolding between MediaTek and Qualcomm. In the course of this struggle, we can see a very unusual development of the situation, which will make the victory of Qualcomm obvious. As part of the sanctions against Huawei, companies must obtain licenses to supply components, issued by the US Department of Commerce. It is highly likely that Qualcomm will receive such a license at the end of the year, while MediaTek will not. And this will be protectionism, which will lead to an increase in the influence of the American Qualcomm on the entire smartphone market, a kind of prize for the company. And by pumping money out of Huawei, with the latter paying more than its competitors. The situation is not pretty, but everything goes exactly to this. The motivation for the outside world, apparently, will be exactly the same that is used today to restrict the access of third-party chipset manufacturers to the American market – a matter of national security. Let me remind you that in the United States you cannot sell smartphones based on chipsets from any manufacturer, except Qualcomm, such a ban has been in effect for many years. And this explains why the same Samsung is forced to purchase these chipsets in such a volume, the American market is one of the main ones for the company.

“Poor” quality of a smartphone – why charging does not work and not only

A fair number of letters have accumulated in the mail, in which the authors lament the quality of modern smartphones. Someone does not charge, falls out of the socket on the case, someone drowned their device, despite the fact that it is protected from water according to the IP68 standard. All these letters have exactly one thing in common – their authors do not understand and do not even think about the fact that they did something wrong with their devices. They truly believe that the problem is not with them, but with the manufacturers.

For example, let’s quote a letter from Anna K.: “I constantly wash in the shower and listen to music, the phone fell on the tiles a couple of times. I examined it carefully, the screen was without a scratch, the case too. A month later, drops appeared on the inside of the screen. The phone won’t turn on. The store was sent to the service, the service refused to repair it, since there is water inside. Here is the vaunted protection from water! What should I do, go to the Consumer Protection Society or go straight to court? ”.

Anna’s story is as old as the world, people cannot create a logical chain of their own actions, our world suffers from a lack of elementary logic, and thought processes for many have become akin to clip thinking, cutting of individual events. Anna does not link the various events that happened to her apparatus into a single picture. The fall of the smartphone and the fact that it withstood them is one event. But protection from water is another characteristic, it has nothing to do with the first events in her mind. And it is not clear why the smartphone “drowned” during the next shower.

With great pleasure he clarified the small details of the incident, plunged into the routine of the schedule of Anna, a manager in a small wholesale company. In the process, it turned out that Anya is a girl clean and after a shower she washes the smartphone with a jet, sometimes she gets foam from the gel. Five letters later and after timid attempts to explain what exactly was wrong with these actions, I received in response: “I did not expect anything else from you, you will defend them to the last instead of helping an ordinary person.” Under the meaningful “them”, apparently, hides the manufacturer of the smartphone.

In society, it is often thought that girls are forgiven not to understand some technical things. As for me, this is a real terry chauvinism and a modern person, regardless of gender, should understand exactly how certain things work. In this case, I am talking exclusively about the practical side of the issue, and not about physics, the structure of the atom and the like.

Let’s look at another letter, the stronger sex can also be confusing. I will not quote the letter in full, it makes no sense, only one passage:

“But something happened that often happens with my phones – I broke it. At the same time, I did not want to change to another and replaced the display in the official service. Oddly enough, the tremors were gone.

Some time after visiting the service, the sub-screen fingerprint sensor stopped working – returned to the service, they recognized their jamb and replaced the display again.

It was about June.

And in September, a strange mysticism began.

  • The phone periodically beeps that the connection with the S-Pen is lost, despite the fact that the stylus is inside, and when you remove it and return it to the place, the error disappears.
  • The fingerprint sensor may not accept one finger 5 times in a row, but the first time it can accept another. By the way, for those who limited the base of fingers to 3 fingerprints, there should be a separate pot in hell – at least 4 are needed (large and index ones, for different situations there is a phone on the table or in your hands). In Note8, he definitely scored at least 4.
  • At some point, apparently, some kind of service related to the transfer of music via Bluetooth failed. Music is not transmitted to the headphones or to the head unit in the car, but the calls work correctly. In the Bluetooth menu, you can forcibly enable the service in the settings – but the slider goes into inactive mode immediately. With another phone (redmi note 9 pro) everything works correctly. You have to walk in two pipes.
  • At about the same time as the problems with the music began, the connection also began to fail – they cannot get through to the only SIM card in the phone, and I can stand in front of the barrier and try to call it to open it, for about 5 minutes – there are no beeps. But after a series of failures, the call is made.

Do you know what struck me? The screen was changed in the broken device, but the service did not do their job very well (or they simply did not hear about the problems, they might not find them). It is striking that a person, having received a cart and a small cart of problems, does not even think that they are somehow connected with damage to the device, writes off all this to the manufacturer’s problems and the poor performance of the smartphone. Sincerely and without the slightest doubt. After all, the replacement of the screen happened, which means that everything is fine.

Moreover, before the broken screen, there were still falls, as there was a “trembling” of the picture, but the image was there, there were no chips, which means that everything worked. In fact, there were clearly previous falls, which were forgotten, since the device did not receive external damage.

Do you think such letters are rare? Several letters come every week, in which the authors convince me that they dropped their device (wet it, dried it with a hairdryer, forgot it in the car in the cold for a couple of days) and this should not affect it in any way. It should work! Why and how, none of them wants to dive into such trifles.

Understanding how a smartphone works is very distant, I get the feeling that in their view it is an eternal thing that has no right to break if dropped. More precisely, not so, they are ready to put up only with the damage that is visible. There is no question that you can damage the motherboard, cameras or something else. And they associate all the problems of such devices not with the fact that they dropped the smartphone, but exclusively with the quality of production. A good psychological trick when everyone around you is to blame, but not yourself.

Attempts to explain the chain of events and the consequences run up against a blank wall of misunderstanding. And sincere misunderstanding. How could a fall a month ago affect water resistance? These are not related events, why are you fooling me? How can a bump that leaves no trace affect Wi-Fi or Bluetooth performance? Why do you think there are some antennas there? I don’t see any antennas on the phone, are you sure they exist? The list of funny and not very misconceptions can be continued indefinitely.

But most of all I am confused by the moment when I get to the signature: “Vasilkov Ivan Ivanovich, candidate of technical sciences.” I sit, stare at the computer screen and try not to be surprised at anything. But at such moments sadness rolls over, intelligent people have become hostages of the modern paradigm of thinking, where two events with one device are not connected in any way. And they sincerely cannot understand what you are trying to explain to them.

Letters from readers – how Yandex pleased its users

A letter from our reader, in which he laments about the actions of “Yandex”. There is nothing special to add here, the situation shows that no one thought about people. We did it in the way that was more convenient and cheaper for Yandex. We read.

Hello Eldar!

I have been a regular reader of your materials for several years now, and I always read analytical articles with particular interest (although I do not always agree with you). I hope that my letter will become the basis for new such material.

As we all know, Sberbank divorced Yandex, and Beru, as Yandex has been telling us for a very long time, will simply change the sign. But it was not there. I, like probably hundreds of thousands, and maybe millions of users, entered the application through Sberbank ID. As a result, yesterday, I could not enter the application, because there is no more login through Sberbank. I wrote in support, to which they replied that from 10 to 30 September I had to transfer my data from Sberbank to Yandex passport. But I have never received such a message. NEVER! Although I ordered several times on Beru during this period. As a result, my profile was deleted, information was erased, all bonuses burned out. Yandex absolutely does not care about this situation. I attach the screen! Can we assume that the same Amazon will delete user profiles for no reason at all? Of course not.

P.S. I am now literally terrorizing Yandex support, but they really don’t give a damn, just continuous replies.

Thanks for reading, have a nice weekend!

Best regards, Arthur.

Spillikins # 610. Free SIM cards, repeating an old storySpillikins # 610. Free SIM cards, repeating an old story

Is a purchase at MTS with imposed accessories a familiar story?

Another story as old as the world, a person decided to buy a smartphone at a discount, and they tried to impose additional goods on him (which is prohibited by law, for a minute). We publish the letter as it is, only we changed the name of the author at his request.

Hello, Eldar Viktorovich!

My name is Ivan. For about 10 years I have not missed a single spill, thank you for that!

I am sharing with you the story of an unsuccessful purchase of an iphone 11 256 phone in the mts online store.

Short preface. Further in the text I will express my subjective opinion as a user of products / services / services. I believe that perfect companies do not exist and I take it easy, but it is frustrating when companies do not try to fix their mistakes or have done so for years. I do not consider the iphone an ideal phone, like the apple company, with their attitude towards their users, what is the story with the butterfly keyboard lasting 4 years (I do not have a MacBook, but I do not like the influence of Tim Cook on the company), I want to tell you not about this.

I think that Apple could have done better, so I didn’t want to buy an iphone without a discount.

When buying an iphone phone (I can say that I did not really consider the installment plan) I chose the mts online store: one of the lowest prices in large online stores, cashback when buying (now the promotion is not valid) + additional cashback 2% when buying from the mts app cashback (now the promotion is not valid), albeit with a restriction for use.

I placed an order in the evening, pickup, only an iphone phone. A few hours later, a polite woman called, offered to choose a cover, refused, then glass and an extension of the warranty for an additional year (approximately the cost of a discount), replied that he was not ready to make a decision over the phone, asked if I could make a final decision when buying in a store, received an affirmative answer. The fact that this woman will add glass to my order and add. I did not expect a guarantee, tk. did not give consent to add this to the order, naively expected that the store would ask me if I wanted to add additional things to the order. From now on, I will always refuse by default, but I am sure that in this case it would not help me.

The next day in the store I said that I want to give up glass and extra. guarantees, after checking the status of the order in the mts online store (I check mail irregularly) and finding new items in the order, the seller replied that this was impossible. I called the online store on the hotline at 8-800-250-05-05, the consultant said that the order could not be changed, first asked to correct the error of the mts online store, then began to swear (taking into account the situation, I tried to use the most neutral expressions without using foul language), the consultant yelled at me and hung up the phone while talking. Later that day, I called the mts online store several times with a request to resolve the situation in which the mts company was to blame (some consultants admitted this and some even made an indistinct apology) and make claims for the quality of service. Some consultants expressed their intention to help me, reissued the order, promised to resolve the issue with the cashback, in fact they simply deceived me. Some of them assured that it was possible to change the order in the store itself, again deception, because in the store itself they refused to change the composition of the order. When checking the order on the website of the mts online store, it was written that in order to make changes, you must contact the hotline at 8-800-250-05-05.

I don’t like it when a cover / glass / extra is added to the check without demand. a year of warranty / 1 year of watching apple tv on an iphone phone [from my current iphone phone, I removed this application from the principle, never launched it], do not allow to remove these imposed things from the check and deceive users.

Now it is clear that the action of the MTS online store was a hoax, otherwise I would not have had problems with the purchase. I rate the quality of service as unsatisfactory.

Previously, the list for the worst quality of service was headed by tmall (as a result, I was able to return the Chinese redmi note 5, sold under the guise of certified, but at what price), now this list is topped by the mts online store.

I give you my consent to use the text of the letter, but please do not use my real data, first name, last name.

Spillikins # 610. Free SIM cards, repeating an old story

Thank you!

Regards, Ivan.

PS… Have a nice work week. Do not get sick, do not take cold, watch yourself and your loved ones. Have time to do your business and do not procrastinate, especially purchases. And be sure to have a good mood.

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